Responses to “Social Media: No Think, Just Feel”
I thought your comment that “we don’t need to work for them, we simply need to show up” was really interesting. It made me think about how social media compares to other forms of media in terms of how much effort is expended in thinking or feeling. Movies, for instance, also seem to provide us feelings just by showing up and watching. We simply need to see a character we like die and we feel sad. Unlike movies, however, social media doesn’t require a long attention span, as we can spend a few seconds on one post and then move onto another post about something completely different. We might find one post sad but then the next one might have us laughing, and like you mentioned, these are all fed by an algorithm that doesn’t care for the order in which we see the posts or how happy or sad we are made by them.
I think this comparison of social media and video games is really interesting. Both are often noted as being a waste of time for the consumer, but obviously, specific situations and use cases result in differing takeaways from the media. However, I think the bite-size over-accessibility of social media and in most situations, lack of thinking about the content makes it very addicting. Of course, this isn’t to say that anyone isn’t receiving information of worth on social media, especially in current times as often news is primarily presented through social media rather than conventional media, although I think the lack of thinking that comes with the typical endless scroll is likely detrimental, while it could be argued the puzzle skills of a Candy Crush addiction provide some value to critical thinking.
I liked your connection to Stephen Johnson is very interesting. I didn’t make that connection while reading, but it is an important one. How are we thinking while using social media? I don’t think I am because I will look up an a long time has passed without me realizing it. This doesn’t necessarily make social media bad, but maybe it can help us be more aware of how we are interacting or not interacting with it.
I like the points you’ve brought up. The constant use of emotion in social media and news cycles can lead to a sort of “addiction to shock value or [x] feeling,” which then can lead to a rabbit hole of looking for more information that gives us that feeling. Some news article ends up as highly-skewed clickbait, because that specific emotion leads to more engagement. (Daily Mail, for example)